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How to use Google Duo on a Windows PC or Laptop

Update [May 8, 2020]: Google will be adding the ability to make group calls on Duo for web users in the coming weeks. The feature will first roll out on Google Chrome and will give you the ability to see more people at the same time through a new layout. Users can add anyone to a group video call and invite users through a joining link. Besides that, Duo will enable a new Family Mode that will let users draw doodles over the call screen with different effects and masks.

Google Duo has finally been released for the Android and iOS devices out there, and chances are good that you’re already using one of these devices. But if you happen to spend most of your time at your Windows PC or Laptop, and actually prefer to do video calls, chats, and stuff from the comfort of your PC chair, then you might want to look into the possibilities of using Google Duo on your PC.

Use Google Duo for Web on your PC

Step 1: Open the Google Duo web version in your favorite desktop browser by visiting this link.

Step 2: Click the ‘Try Duo for web’ button in the top right-hand corner of your screen.

Note: If you are not signed, Google will now ask you to sign in using a Google ID. When you are signed in, go to the next step.

Step 3: You will now be asked to enter your phone number for verification purposes. Enter your correct phone number and the correct country code in order to receive a verification code.

Note: You can choose to not verify your phone number with Google Duo but that will give you limited functionality. You will only be able to receive calls from your contacts and other people that you might have called in the past using Google Duo.

Step 4: Enter the verification code you received by text in order to verify your Google Duo id.

Tip: You can use the ‘Resend’ option in case you face any issues with the verification process. In case you are still unable to receive a verification code, visit this link for a help page created by Google to find a potential solution to your problem.

Step 5: You will now be asked to grant the website permission to send you notifications and permission to use your camera and microphone. Grant the necessary permissions to start using Google Duo.

Step 6: You will reach the home screen of Google Duo’s web version. Click the Allow button on the top.

Step 7: Click the ‘Allow’ button in the pop-up in the top left corner of the screen.

Step 8: All your contacts will be loaded.

Step 9: Click the contact or number you want to place a video or voice call to.

Step 10: Click the Voice call button to initiate a voice call. Else, click the Video call button to place a video call.

Use Google Duo Android app on PC

In this method, we use the Google Duo Android app on your PC, using an app player software called Nox.

Step 1: Download and install the following software on your Windows computer:

Step 2: Open/Run Nox App Player on your PC. When it’s fully loaded, click the Settings icon in the window control bar (near Window close, maximize and close button).

Step 3: From Nox settings, enable Root access and let the program restart.

Step 4: Once Nox restarts, add your Google account as you add it on an Android device. Go to Settings > Accounts > Add account.

Step 5: Drag and drop the Google Duo APK you downloaded in Step 1 to the Nox App Player window.

Step 6: You’ll see a pop-up window, select the ‘Open APK folder’ option to open the APK file in a file manager on Nox.

Step 7: Click on Google Duo APK file from the file manager window, scroll to the bottom and hit the Install button to install Google Duo on Nox App Player.

Step 8: Once Google Duo is installed, choose ‘Open’ to open the Google Duo App on your PC.

Step 9: Setup Google Duo app by verifying your number. Use the on-screen keys to input your number, else the Next button may not work. Also, keep your mobile number close as you’ll receive verification code by either SMS or by a call. If verification fails to reach you by SMS, click on ‘CALL ME’.

Note: One phone number can only run one instance of Google Duo. So if you’ve already set up Google Duo on your Android device, make sure to use another mobile number to set up Google Duo on PC. Else, Duo will be unregistered on your Android device.

Step 10: Once Google Duo is setup, click on the video call button and select the contact you want to make a video call to.

Note: You can only make video calls to numbers saved in your Contacts. This is why we recommended you to add a Google account in Step 5 above so that you’ll have contacts from your phone synced over to your PC.

That’s all. Enjoy using Google Duo on your PC.

How to fix “message not sent to” error on Google Duo

Alternative services to Google Duo

While you should be able to use the Google Duo application on your PC using the method above, there is a possibility that you might run into a few issues while trying to set up the application on your PC or you might even get an error message preventing you from logging in to your Google account.

So if you aren’t able to get Google Duo working on your PC, then here are a few great alternatives for you to choose from which serve the same purpose as Google Duo.

Zoom

Zoom has quickly risen as one of the most popular collaborative tools and the one reason why is how simple it is to use. The cloud-based video conferencing service offers group video conferences, one-on-one meetings, screen-sharing, and more. The service can host group meetings of up to 100 members at once, even for users on free plans.

While it has more offerings for its paid users, Zoom’s free plan lets host 40-minute meetings when connecting to two or more individuals. You can schedule Zoom meetings via Google Calendar using Zoom extensions on web browsers.

Get Zoom Meetings & Chat

Skype Meet Now

While Microsoft has had its Skype service for over a decade now, the service lacked tools for collaboration. That changes now as Skype has added a new Meet Now feature which allows users to set up a collaboration space and invite Skype and non-Skype contacts.

Meet Now on Skype can host conference calls, webinars and work interviews and you will be able to access previous call recordings for up to 30 days and media shared in the chat even longer. You can share presentations, screens, blue your background, enable/disable video, mute calls, and send reactions during a meeting.

Get Skype Meet Now

Microsoft Teams

With the impact of COVID-19 forcing organizations to work remotely, Microsoft Teams has now become a widely used tool for collaboration. The service offers video and audio conferencing, file-sharing, instant messaging, end-to-end encryption, and real-time editing.

While these features are available on any collaboration tool, Teams additionally offers team links for easy joining, muting all participants during the meeting, guest and member privileges inside teams, custom video backgrounds, message editing, scheduling, creating polls, surveys, and quizzes.

Get Microsoft Teams

Cisco Webex

Cisco’s free Webex tier offers unlimited usage with no time restrictions, support for up to 100 participants, screen sharing, HD video, and a personal room that can be accessed for an unlimited time period. Unlike other collaboration tools in this list, Webex is fully browser-based but features one-click meetings, hand raising, presentation Tools, and invitation management.

Users that are invited do not need to create an account to join a meeting and will have access to webinars, online training, and remote support.

Get Cisco Webex

Jitsi Meet

Jitsi Meet is an open-source video conferencing platform that offers encrypted group calls with as many participants as possible for free. The service offers group video calling that has no time limit and no account creation.

You can start a video conference by heading over to Jitsi Meet and creating a meeting name. Participants can log into the meeting through join-in links and for safety, a conference can be created with password protection.

Get Jitsi Meet

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